HBO announced today that it has renewed the fantasy epic His Dark Materials for a third season in conjunction with the BBC. In its first two seasons, the show adapted the first two books of Philip Pullman’s young-adult trilogy, The Golden Compass and The Subtle Knife. The third season will adapt the final novel, The Amber Spyglass, according to executive producer Jane Tranter, who said, “I am excited, thrilled, and honoured to be making the third part of Philip Pullman’s trilogy with their support and encouragement. Diolch.” (That’s Welsh for “thank you.”) Season three, which will continue to star Dafne Keen, Amir Wilson, and Ruth Wilson, is slated to film in Cardiff in 2021.
If the first two seasons did a commendable job of bringing the books’ fantastical imagery to life — including the armored bears, daemons, witches, and interdimensional portals — the third season will pose some fascinating creative challenges. How will they adapt Lord Asriel’s intention craft? Or the sentient, elephant-trunked beasts known as the mulefa, whose physiognomies are based on a diamond axis and who roll around on wheels? Or how about literal hell? If they cast Luca Marinelli and Marwan Kenzari from The Old Guard as the book’s OTP Balthamos and Baruch, we’ll be satisfied.